I Tend to Wander

22 Apr

It is not my proudest moment, but I have come to realize that over the past 6-8 years I have gone on 4 diets where I have needed to lose a significant amount of weight.  Each time, I have attempted and succeeded in losing over 30 pounds.  If you do the math on that I have essentially lost a 4th grader.  I am proud of the hard work I have put in, but its not like I went from one weight and then am now 120 pounds lighter.  I have lost the same 30ish pounds and keep going between a fighting weight of 225 and 175.  This has gotten old and really needs to stop.  Not only is it annoying to be going through this whole thing again and again, I am also told it is unhealthy.  I am sure that is true.  As I am in my 4th time of snacking on ice chips and air, allow me to share a few things I hope will help it stick a bit more than the last times:

I eat to make myself feel good: When I am stressed I eat.  When I am tired I eat.  When I need to stay awake I eat.  When I am bored I eat.  When it is Boxing Day in Canada I eat. Thankfully I am out of Master’s Degree program, which forced me to stay awake till all hours of the day.  It created unwanted stress in my life.  I am hoping that going to bed on time and taking this significant life event out will help.  That being said, I know I will have future ups and downs so my hope is to put something like exercise or cat tossing in food’s place.

I need to treat myself:  I need to find a better way to eat the things I enjoy rather than doing it all the time.  The last time I fought from 225 pounds and got all the way down to 184, I literally stopped working out and started eating horribly all in one day, not looking back until 2 months ago.  I know people that allow a cheat day or one meal or when they are out with friends.  My problem is I had a cheat year.  I think that was too long.

I don’t have goals:  Each time I have lost my weight I had a goal.  Once was a contest, once was my doctor and my cholesterol, and once I was poor and couldn’t fit into my clothes and couldn’t afford to buy new ones.  I came across this video on Mark Oestricher’s blog that is from NPR.  It gives a bit of a reason for why we end up where we start when we don’t know where we are going.

I don’t think goals are a bad thing, it gives me something to shoot for.  I just need different goals after I hit my weight/diet goals.  Run a tri-athlon.  Be able to do 20 one-armed push ups.  Doesn’t really matter, but something that I can aim for, and keep me healthy.  If you don’t have the end in mind then it is tough to aim for anything.

It has to be fun:  The gym is great, but grows old after a while.  For me and my personality make up I need to do different things that I enjoy to keep me healthy.  I am excited that as seasons go, my family is moving out of the new baby season and into a season where my kids want to move and do stuff.  I have discovered new born babies don’t want to ride many bikes, and my wife can’t really jog after a C-section.  My hope is that day hikes will happen.  Bike rides will happen.  Life will happen, but it will be on the move a bit more.

I write this to share what I have learned but also as a bit of a confession, so I am not back here in a year, kicking myself for the same reasons.  I believe it can happen.  What does it take for you to make a significant life change and make it stick?

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Posted by on April 22, 2011 in exercise, health, weight loss


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